Wrestler stripped of gold
Nearly three months after the closing ceremony, another Olympic athlete has been stripped of a medal for a doping violation at the London Games. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has disqualified Soslan Tigiev, a freestyle wrestler from Uzbekistan who won bronze in the 74kg class, two officials familiar with the case said. Tigiev tested positive for the banned stimulant methylhexaneamine and the result was not confirmed until after the games finished on Aug. 12, the officials said. The case has remained confidential while going through the IOC’s disciplinary process. Hungary’s Gabor Hatos is to be upgraded to bronze. Tigiev becomes the second athlete from the London Olympics stripped of a medal because of a doping violation. Nadzeya Ostapchuk of Belarus had her gold in the women’s shot put revoked by the IOC after testing positive for the steroid metenolone.
FIFA scraps Thai stadium
Soccer’s governing body FIFA has forced Thailand to move the knockout stages of the Futsal World Cup from a purpose-built US$40 million stadium after the venue failed safety tests. A FIFA inspection team found the Bangkok Futsal Arena “will not be ready” to host the main games of the indoor football competition, including the Nov. 18 final, the body said in a statement. Despite spending of a reported US$40 million, the venue has been dogged by construction problems, including a delay until late last week of the delivery of the wooden flooring that makes up the pitch. Although “significant progress has been made, including the installation of a pitch,” the stadium fell short of key safety criteria, FIFA said on Tuesday. “The safety of spectators, teams and all other visitors to the stadium are of paramount importance. FIFA … therefore concluded that such a fundamental issue … cannot be compromised.” The quarter-final, semi-final and final matches will be played at an another indoor stadium in Bangkok that is hosting group games.
Olympians in new team
Olympic champions Laura Trott, Dani King and Joanna Rowsell have signed for a new women’s team supported by fellow British London 2012 cycling gold medalist and Tour de France winner Bradley Wiggins. The DTPC (Dream Team Pro Cycling) Honda Pro Cycling Team are to be registered in Britain and will be led by Australia’s Rochelle Gilmore. A statement issued on Tuesday said Commonwealth Games champion Gilmore was “presently in deep negotiations [over the naming rights] with a global company based in the United Kingdom. The team is also privileged to have the personal backing of British cycling legend Bradley Wiggins CBE through the Wiggo Foundation.”
Evans loses rape appeal
Wales soccer international Ched Evans on Tuesday lost his Court of Appeal challenge against his conviction for rape. The 23-year-old, who played for Sheffield United as a striker, was jailed for five years in April after being found guilty of raping a woman who prosecutors said was “too drunk to consent.” Evans was accused of raping the 19-year-old woman at a north Wales hotel in May last year while two friends attempted to film the incident using a mobile phone. He applied for leave to appeal against his conviction, but three judges rejected his case. The three judges also threw out a bid by Evans to have his sentence reduced.